Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Mission Hill 2001 Reserve Shiraz (British Columbia)

This is one of those bottles that has been sitting in my cellar for what seems like forever. Today I finally spied it out of the corner of my eye and yanked it out of it's slot, "tonight it's you and me baby!" So now I am sitting with the wine in front of me - it still has a lovely colour, with only a touch of brown on the outside rim. When first opened it smelled of nothing and tasted the same ... bland, boring, no fruit, a little pepper, but that's about it. It tasted more like a coloured water than anything else. I swirled and aerated the wine in my mouth ... something began to emerge, the wine had been closed up in bottle for so long it forgot how to be wine in the glass. Now some 30 minutes from opening there is something to write about, not much, but something. There's a cedary-peppery-ness to this wine when you smell it; the palate is also very peppery with hints of fruit from a by-gone time. It's old and tired but not ready to give up the ghost quite yet. Not the best Mission Hill wine I have tasted, certainly not the worst wine I've ever had - it's drinkable still but I'm glad I pulled it out tonight; another 6 months, maybe a year, and this would have been destined for salad dressing.

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